Angus Quigley Wrapping Up KU Career

Nov. 13, 2009

It’s that time of year again when the fans and those close to the football program thank a group of quality individuals for their contributions as they play their last home game at Memorial Stadium.

At Tuesday’s press conference, head coach Mark Mangino said that this year’s senior class has meant a great deal to the Kansas football program, Athletic Department and to the University. Through the highs and lows of college football, Mangino said that this group had faced challenges and met many of them head on in a mature fashion.

For senior linebacker Angus Quigley, roadblocks have been a frequent occurrence. Near the beginning of his redshirt-freshman year in 2006, Quigley went down with an out-of-the-blue injury and found himself in a wheelchair for several weeks, followed by crutches for almost a month. Although it was a tough rehabilitation, Quigley was able to get back on his feet and find his way back to the gridiron.

“I had time where I was down and out,” said Quigley. “I was in a wheelchair for four weeks so I look back on that and when things go wrong, I think, man, they’re never as bad as they could be. There’s other people whose careers have ended so I always try to stay positive when I think about things like that.”

Next, during 2007 spring practice, Quigley lined up at wide receiver, gaining praise from the coaches. Quigley’s time at wide receiver was short-lived and he found his way back onto the depth chart at running back.

Then came 2008 when he played himself into the starting running back position for two games [Sam Houston State, Iowa State] in front of Jake Sharp and former junior college transfer Jocques Crawford. After a few costly turnovers and lackluster games, Quigley handed the starting job over to Jake Sharp.

Following the 2008 season the linebacking corps lost all three starters and the thought of helping out the team and becoming a linebacker turned into reality for Quigley.

The unselfish Quigley said he would do anything to help put the team in the best position to win. The former running back was thrown into the mix at linebacker and still faced plenty of roadblocks at the new position. You can’t blame the physically gifted athlete for taking on another challenge.

“It’s been so long since I played defense and everything is moving so fast,” Quigley said. “I had to switch my mind from this offensive mindset of running the ball and finding gaps to now having to fit the gaps.”

He took the difficult task of switching to defense head on and learned the new linebacker position from scratch. The switch for Quigley came during winter conditioning when coaches were on the recruiting, which was another barrier in what he had hoped would be a quick learning process to linebacker.

“I didn’t know the schemes or anything so spring ball rolled around and it was like, I was running around with my head on fire,” said Quigley. “I know I had the tools to do it, but I didn’t really have the knowledge at the time to be the best that I could be. It’s a challenge I chose to take on.”

Quigley, who will be graduating this December, said that everything came so quick and it was tougher than he expected it to be. However, he said he was just trying to help the team in whatever way possible.

“I changed positions my senior year because I figured I could help the team out with the position,” Quigley said. “I’m getting more playing time now and I’m still in my playbook, trying to learn some things.”

The extended playing time for Quigley at linebacker arrived during the current four-game losing streak and while the losses have hurt the whole team, the seniors aren’t giving up yet.

“We still know there’s things to play for to try and salvage the season,” Quigley said. “We’re going to stick together and the seniors are going to continue to lead and try to finish this out the way the seniors want to finish their senior season out.”

Nothing would be greater for Quigley than to have repeat performance of what took place the last time the Cornhuskers traveled to Lawrence. The Jayhawks powered their way to a 76-39 win over the Cornhuskers in 2007. It was this game that stood out as one of Quigley’s greatest moments here as a Jayhawk.

“Nebraska is a storied program and we’re one of those programs that is trying to come on our way up,” Quigley said. “We were just trying to garner respect throughout the league and when you beat Nebraska, they’re one of the teams that help you get there.”

Kansas will host the Cornhuskers on Senior Day on Saturday, Nov. 14 at 2:30 p.m., as 15 seniors will make their final appearance at Memorial Stadium.